Practicing Presence Through Fear, with Love


“Only from the heart, can you touch the sky.” – Rumi

As you feel into the energy of this photo and the quote, what arises within for you? (please share in the comment section below – when you share, you inspire!)

Currently, the shrine for the man who was burned while sleeping is still at the entranceway to ‘my’ beach. My heart feels all of that energy as I step onto the sand and walk toward ocean’s edge.

It was suggested that I try a different beach for now. I understand. And, I also feel that too often, we allow fear to divert us from experiencing the spaces and connections that delight us and that is not how my open-hearted self wishes to live.

So I summon all of the courage I have, and I choose to show up – in that process my heart opens through that which I cannot fathom.

Because I work with and understand dynamics within energy movement, I also know that this choice to open through vulnerability will manifest in some way in my physical life as well.  That ‘knowing’ inspires me to keep showing up through this vulnerable space.

I bring to Source that which I don’t understand and grace infuses my steps, until there is peace where I didn’t know peace could exist. It’s a practice, though, of showing up each and every day, with a willingness to open my heart even through the questioning. 

I bring that faith, trust, peace from ocean’s edge back into my physical life and it shows up in a myriad of ways, so I can see it in action. For example, my car just broke down at a very inconvenient time, during my teenager’s finals week (we don’t live on the school bus route, so that was tricky!) in between Facets classes, and my mind says ‘oh, shit’, while my heart says ‘feel for the blessing and allow Source to open this up for you’.

I didn’t say ‘why, me / why, now’ (as I might have in the past), I said “show me the possibilities and show me how to keep my heart open through this”. 

Answers were placed in ways beyond what I could have imagined and peace was felt and celebrated. 

Perhaps you have a practice of presence to faith and trust, that invites you to experience peace and joy even in moments that are a stretch. I invite you to bring all of that energy into your daily life and see what opens up for you! (I’d love to know about it – either in the comments below or via email)

While my heart hurts and I feel sad to live in a world where hatred exists and intentional pain is caused, my heart also celebrates sacred connection (here on earth, with each other) and I feel happy to live in a world where grace, compassion and love make a difference. 

I think this photo captures that energy well.

As I stood there, wondering about the effectiveness of love in this world (and is my choice to follow a heart-path ‘silly’ as some people label it) a friend messaged me, explaining she was taking a business course and wanted to know what I felt her gifts were in business and friendship. I replied that I would answer her only after she shared her answer with me.

I meant, ‘after she shared her answer about herself with me’ but she misunderstood and responded with the most beautiful reflection about what she felt my gifts in business and friendship were.

(And yes, I do answer messages from my friends while on the beach at sunset, because that brings genuine love right there into my physical realm of being!)

A few moments after that, I took the above photo of sunset’s afterglow; while it is technically full of imperfections, I love the energy dearly, so I posted it on social media. It was very well-received – brought numerous comments on each of the outlets – which surprised me because all I can see is the imperfection. (I added the quote today, to share with you, as a wonderful affirmation for February.)

Here is the thing, my friends.

(Well, first, is a reminder to drop self-judgment).

Sometimes mind will say ‘it’s imperfect so don’t share it’ while heart whispers *yes, please*.

It can be anything that is a creative expression dear to your heart: a morning hug in the busyness of getting ready, a kind word while passing on the street, a small note of appreciation to someone who has shared something that touched you, that special flourish when you are making a meal to share with a loved one, a poem you spent hours writing, a painting that captures exactly what you wanted it to…..


Sometimes mind will say ‘the love you wish to share is in imperfect form and will be….rejected, deflected, unappreciated, criticized….is not enough, is too much, is tainted/broken/discolored…..’ and you listen, so you don’t share and then you feel: sad, alone, angry at yourself, small, heavy, disappointed….(we’ve each at one time or another done this, so please don’t feel bad as you recall your own experience).

(And, oh my – sometimes mind will say ‘you are imperfect’ and will be rejected, deflected, unappreciated, etc … and you listen so you stay at home tucked away instead of sharing your presence with world. We’ve each had a few of those moments, as well.)

When we have a practice of presence in place, heart will override mind and you find yourself sharing through that vulnerability and you then feel: bliss, peace, connectedness, like infinite possibility is very real indeed, empowered, light, encouraged….(as you remember these feelings from past experiences, please allow them to fill the space you are currently in – powerful energies to bring forward to ‘now’.)

Life is a mix of these moments – of the ones where fear stifles your love and convinces you (and your expressions) to stay ‘tucked away’ and where trust dissolves that fear enough that your love expressions simply flow out to world and you choose to step out from the shadows and share.

I felt moved to open February with this message, because it’s a month in which love is talked about and celebrated in a mainstream way, far more than any other month. While that can be awesome, it can also be a trigger for some. 

If you are choosing to celebrate Love, I invite you to allow yourself *fullness* of the experience – to open to ‘more’ than you have yet.

If you are feeling triggered about Love, I invite you to leave lots of time and space for that energy to be, as it is, and to be ultra-kind and gentle with yourself, perhaps centering into your practices of presence that nourish your spirit and allowing that connection to gently open your heart to something ‘more’ – beyond that pain.

I thank you for your time and for processing this with me today. I appreciate your presence and I look forward to receiving your insights and reflections (your voice and experience matters, and I hope you choose to share it!)

Much peace and abundant love,


You may be interested in:

Connecting and Creating with Intention – a 30-day ecourse beginning February 26th.  An invitation to feel the fullness of connection available within a sacred container (in this case, the class forum) and to feel the potency of being supported as you set an intention and create in alignment with that intention. Coaching (by me) is included.

Personal Empowerment Coaching Session  to support you in creating something new by drawing in specific energy and/or releasing specific energy to either unravel an inner knot/ remove a block / manifest/ or experience fullness of connection and ease of creative expression.

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Comments on: "Practicing Presence Through Fear, with Love" (10)

  1. Hi Joy:

    Your post is a lovely reminder to keep creating and sharing the beauty we see with our hearts even if we feel vulnerable.

    xo Tanya

  2. When I have Fears That I May Cease to Be

    When I have fears that I may cease to be
    Before my pen has gleaned my teeming brain,
    Before high-pilèd books, in charactery,
    Hold like rich garners the full ripened grain;
    When I behold, upon the night’s starred face,
    Huge cloudy symbols of a high romance,
    And think that I may never live to trace
    Their shadows with the magic hand of chance;
    And when I feel, fair creature of an hour,
    That I shall never look upon thee more,
    Never have relish in the faery power
    Of unreflecting love—then on the shore
    Of the wide world I stand alone, and think
    Till love and fame to nothingness do sink.


    Much of what you so beautifully speak about was realized in the short life of John Keats…only much later to become one of the most beloved poets of our language…

    Thank you Joy!

    I am looking forward to the next *I Believe In Magic 30 Day Photo Journey* having ‘Poetry and Photography’ once again!

    • Thank you for sharing a beautiful poem and kind words, Rand! And, I am glad you are present in *I Believe in Magic*, I learn so much from what you share.

  3. This is so beautiful, Joy. I love the way you acknowledge that fear and love ebb and flow. And how you work with the paradox of joy and suffering.

    • Thank you for your presence and kind words, Sandra! As I read your words, I understand this about my thoughts on love – maybe depth of love is possible because we are not afraid to feel either joy or fear (two feelings many people choose to shift away from or bury). And maybe that depth of love then gives us the courage to feel joy and fear in daily life.

  4. I found this post wonderfully calming and if I dare admit, I copied a couple of your quotes. I have sticky notes I keep on my computer desktop to remind me of things — sometimes concrete things like, “Remember the Dentist Appointment” and other times I put in messages that inspire me.

    The quotes I saved from this post definitely inspire me. I often fall into the category of saying “why me” instead of “show me the possibilities.” So that quote will be read often!!!!

    I am so sorry about the homeless man. It’s difficult to absorb how someone could do that to anyone. But I think about the shrine left there. Hopefully, it will remind those who visit to consider our responsibilities to others.

    • I am glad something I shared resonates with you, Sara – I would love to know of your experience with using ‘show me the possibilities’ – either here or you may email me. I have found it to be a powerful phrase – my focus is then on opening to see and celebrate the possibilities that are shown.

  5. Absolutely beautiful, Joy!!! Tell me, would you make this picture into a card that I can purchase?
    Thank you! ?

    • Thank you, Maryse! This photo looks lovely on the computer but the dark clouds make it look grainy in a print or photo so I won’t be making a card, but I do absolutely appreciate that you like it and I emailed you the photo to use as you wish.

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